Illinois Compiled Statutes
Information maintained by the Legislative Reference Bureau
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225 ILCS 715/1
(225 ILCS 715/1)
(from Ch. 96 1/2, par. 4501)
This Act may be cited as the
Surface-Mined Land Conservation and Reclamation Act.
(Source: P.A. 86-1475.)
225 ILCS 715/2
(225 ILCS 715/2)
(from Ch. 96 1/2, par. 4502)
Statement of policy.
It is declared to be the policy of this State to provide for
conservation and reclamation of lands affected by surface mining in
order to restore them to optimum future productive use and to provide
for their return to productive use including but not limited to: the
planting of forests; the seeding of grasses and legumes for grazing
purposes; the planting of crops for harvest; the enhancement of wildlife
and aquatic resources; the establishment of recreational, residential
and industrial sites; and for the conservation, development, management,
and appropriate use of all the natural resources of such areas for
compatible multiple purposes, to aid in maintaining or improving the tax
base; and protecting the health, safety and general welfare of the
people, the natural beauty and aesthetic values, and enhancement of the
environment in the affected areas of the State; to prevent erosion,
stream pollution, water, air and land pollution and other injurious
effects to persons, property, wildlife and natural resources; and to
assure that conservation and reclamation plans for all surface mining
activity are available for the prior consideration of county governments
within whose jurisdiction such lands will be affected by surface mining
and to permit participation and authorize cooperation and coordination with
the federal government in initial regulatory programs under the federal
Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977, Public Law 95-87, Title
30, USC Sec. 1201 et seq.
The issuance of a permit under this Act to engage in the surface mining
of any resources other than fossil fuels is not intended to relieve the
permittee from its duty to comply with other applicable
state and local law regulating the commencement, location and operation
of surface mining facilities.
(Source: P.A. 82-114.)
225 ILCS 715/3
(225 ILCS 715/3)
(from Ch. 96 1/2, par. 4503)
Wherever used or referred to in this Act, unless a
different meaning clearly appears from the context:
(a) "Reclamation" means conditioning areas affected by surface mining to
achieve the purposes of this Act.
(b) "Overburden" means all of the earth and other materials which lie
above natural deposits of coal, clay, stone, sand, gravel, or other
minerals, and also means such earth and other materials disturbed from
their natural state in the process of surface mining.
(c) "Surface mining" means the mining of any minerals by removing the
overburden lying above natural deposits thereof, and mining directly from
the natural deposits thereby exposed or the deposition of overburden therefrom.
(d) "Operator" means any person, firm, partnership or corporation
engaged in and controlling a surface mining operation, and includes
political subdivisions and instrumentalities of the State of Illinois.
(e) "Pit" means a tract of land, from which overburden has been or is
being removed for the purpose of surface mining.
(f) "Final cut" means the last pit created in a surface-mined area.
(g) "High wall" means that side of the pit adjacent to unmined land.
(h) "Affected land" means the area of land from which
overburden is removed for surface mining or upon which overburden or
refuse is deposited. It also means any area of land utilized for drainage
ditches and haulage roads at surface coal mines.
(i) "Refuse" means all waste materials directly connected with the
cleaning and preparation of minerals mined by surface mining and discarded
equipment and machinery.
(j) "Slurry" means that portion of refuse separated from the mineral in
the cleaning process, consisting of fines and clays in the preparation
plant effluent, and which is readily pumpable.
(k) "Gob" means that portion of refuse consisting of waste coal, rock,
pyrites, slate, or other unmerchantable material of relatively large size
which is separated from the mineral in the cleaning process.
(l) "Acid forming materials" means those materials capable of producing
toxic conditions when exposed.
(m) "Toxic conditions" means any conditions that will not support higher
forms of plant or animal life in any place in connection with or as a
result of the completion of surface mining.
(n) "Ridge" means a lengthened elevation of overburden created in the
surface mining process.
(o) "Peak" means a projecting point of overburden created in the surface
(p) "Department" means Department of Natural Resources or such department, bureau, or commission as may lawfully succeed
to the powers and duties of such Department.
(q) "Director" means the Director of the Department of Natural Resources or such officer, bureau or commission as may lawfully
succeed to the powers and duties of such Director.
(r) "Darkened surface soil" means mineral horizons formed at
or adjacent to the surface of the soil which are higher in organic matter
content and visibly darker in color than the immediately underlying horizons.
(s) "Aggregate mining industry" means producers, by surface mining method,
of all minerals other than coal, including sand, gravel, silica sand, shale,
clay, limestone and
any other mineral which may be so mined.
(Source: P.A. 91-938, eff. 1-11-01
225 ILCS 715/4
(225 ILCS 715/4)
(from Ch. 96 1/2, par. 4504)
It shall be unlawful for any operator to engage in surface mining in an
area where the overburden shall exceed 10 feet in depth or where the
operation will affect more than 10 acres during the permit year without
first obtaining from the Department a permit so to do, in such form as is
(Source: P.A. 77-1568.)
225 ILCS 715/4.1
(225 ILCS 715/4.1)
(from Ch. 96 1/2, par. 4505)
(Source: P.A. 91-357, eff. 7-29-99. Repealed by P.A. 91-938, eff. 1-11-01.)
225 ILCS 715/5
(225 ILCS 715/5)
(from Ch. 96 1/2, par. 4506)
Application for permit; bond; fee; permit.
(a) Application for a permit shall be made upon a form furnished by the
Department, which form shall contain a description of the tract or tracts of
land and the
estimated number of acres thereof to be affected by surface mining by the
applicant to the tenth succeeding June 30, which description
the section, township, range, and county in which the land is located and
shall otherwise describe the land with sufficient certainty so that it may
be located and distinguished from other lands, and a statement that the
applicant has the right and power by legal estate owned to mine by surface
mining and to reclaim the land so described. Such application shall be
accompanied by: (i) a bond or security meeting the requirements
of Section 8 of this Act; and (ii) a fee of $150 for every acre
and fraction of an acre of land to be permitted.
(b) An operator desiring to have a permit amended to cover
land may file an amended application with the Department with such additional
fee and bond or security as may be required under the provisions of this
Act. Such amendment shall comply with all requirements of this Act.
(c) An operator may withdraw any land covered by a permit, excepting
land, by notifying the Department thereof, in which case the penalty of
the bond or security filed by such operator pursuant to the provisions of
this Act shall be reduced proportionately.
(e) Every application, and every amendment to an application, submitted
under this Act shall contain the following, except that the Director may
waive the requirements of this subsection (e) for amendments if the affected
acreage is similar in nature to the acreage stated in the permit to be amended:
1. a statement of the ownership of the land and of
the minerals to be mined;
2. the minerals to be mined;
3. the character and composition of the vegetation
and wildlife on lands to be affected;
4. the current and past uses to which the lands to be
5. the current assessed valuation of the lands to be
affected and the assessed valuation shown by the two quadrennial assessments next preceding the currently effective assessment;
6. the nature, depth and proposed disposition of the
7. the estimated depth to which the mineral deposit
8. the location of existing roads, and anticipated
access and haulage roads planned to be used or constructed in conducting surface mining;
9. the technique to be used in surface mining;
10. the location and names of all streams, creeks,
bodies of water and underground water resources within lands to be affected;
11. drainage on and away from the lands to be
affected including directional flow of water, natural and artificial drainways and waterways, and streams or tributaries receiving the discharge;
12. the location of buildings and utility lines
within lands to be affected;
13. the results of core drillings of consolidated
materials in the overburden when required by the Department, provided that the Department may not require core drillings at the applicant's expense in excess of one core drill for every 25 acres of land to be affected;
14. a conservation and reclamation plan and map
acceptable to the Department. The operator shall designate which parts of the lands to be affected are proposed to be reclaimed for forest, pasture, crop, horticultural, homesite, recreational, industrial or other uses including food, shelter and ground cover for wildlife and shall show the same by appropriate designation on a reclamation map. The plan shall:
(i) provide for timely compliance with all
operator duties set forth in Section 6 of this Act by feasible and available means; and
(ii) provide for storage of all overburden and
Information respecting the minerals to be mined required by subparagraph (e)2
of this Section, respecting the estimated depth to which the mineral deposit
will be mined required by subparagraph (e)7 of this Section, and respecting the
results of core drillings required by subparagraph (e)13 of this Section shall
be held confidential by the Department upon written request of the applicant.
(f) All information required in subsection (e) of this Section, with the
exception of that information which is to be held in confidentiality by
the Department shall be made available by the operator for public inspection
at the county seat of each county containing land to be affected. The county
board of each county containing lands to be affected may propose the use
for which such lands within its county are to be reclaimed and such proposal
shall be considered by the Department, provided that any such proposal must
be consistent with all requirements of this Act.
Such plan shall be deposited with the county board no less than 60 days
prior to any action on the plan by the Department. All actions by the county
board pursuant to this Section must be taken within 45 days of receiving the
If requested by a county board of a county to be affected under a proposed
permit, a public hearing to be conducted by the Department shall be held
in such county on the permit applicant's proposed reclamation plan. By
rules and regulations the Department shall establish hearing dates which
provide county boards reasonable time in which to have reviewed the proposed
plans and the procedural rules for the calling and conducting of the public
hearing. Such procedural rules shall include provisions for reasonable
notice to all parties, including the applicant, and reasonable opportunity
for all parties to respond by oral or written testimony, or both, to statements
and objections made at the public hearing. County boards and the public
shall present their recommendations at these hearings. A complete record
of the hearings and all testimony shall be made by the Department and recorded
(g) The Department shall approve a conservation and reclamation plan if the plan complies with this Act and completion of the plan
will in fact achieve every duty of the operator required by this Act. The
Department's approval of a plan shall be based upon the advice of technically
trained foresters, agronomists, economists, engineers, planners and other
relevant experts having experience in reclaiming surface-mined lands, and
having scientific or technical knowledge based upon research into reclaiming
and utilizing surface-mined lands. The Department shall consider all testimony
presented at the public hearings as provided in subsection
(f) of this
Section. In cases where no public hearing is held on a proposed plan, the
Department shall consider written testimony from county boards when submitted
no later than 45 days following filing of the proposed plan with the county
board. The Department shall immediately serve copies of such written testimony
on the applicant and give the applicant a reasonable opportunity to respond
by written testimony. The Department shall consider the short and long
term impact of the proposed mining on vegetation, wildlife, fish, land use,
land values, local tax base, the economy of the region and the State,
opportunities, air pollution, water pollution, soil contamination, noise
pollution and drainage. The Department may consider feasible
uses for which reclamation might prepare the land to be affected and may
analyze the relative costs and effects of such alternatives. Whenever the
Department does not approve the operator's plan, and whenever the plan approved
by the Department does not conform to the views of the county board expressed
in accordance with subsection (f) of this Section, the
issue a statement of its reasons for its determination and shall make such
statement public. The approved plan shall be filed by the applicant with
the clerk of each county containing lands to be affected and such plan shall
be available for public inspection at the office of the clerk until reclamation
is completed and the bond is released in accordance with the provisions of the
(h) Upon receipt of a bond or security, all fees due from the operator,
and approval of the conservation and reclamation plan by the Department,
the Department shall issue a permit to the applicant which shall entitle
him to engage thereafter in surface mining on the land therein described
until the tenth succeeding June 30, the period for which such
issued being hereafter referred to as the "permit period".
(i) The operator may transfer any existing permit to a second operator,
after first notifying the Department of the intent to transfer said permit.
The Department shall transfer any existing permit to a second party upon
written notification from both parties and the posting of an adequate
performance bond by the new permittee.
(Source: P.A. 97-1136, eff. 1-1-13.)
225 ILCS 715/6
(225 ILCS 715/6)
(from Ch. 96 1/2, par. 4507)
Duties of operator.
Every operator to whom a permit is
issued pursuant to the provisions of this Act may engage in surface
mining upon the lands described in the permit upon the performance of
and subject to the following requirements with respect to such lands:
(a) All land affected by surface mining except as otherwise provided
in this Act shall be graded to a rolling topography traversable by
machines necessary for maintenance in accordance with the planned use, with
slopes having no more than 15% grade,
except that in the following cases the grade shall not exceed 30%: (i) lands to be reclaimed to forest plantation, recreational or wildlife land
(ii) the outside slope of the box cut spoil, and (iii) the outside
slopes of all overburden deposition areas. The final cut spoil and the side slopes of haulage road inclines
can remain at a slope equal to the angle of repose of the material, provided
the material can support vegetative cover. However, in no case shall the
Department require grading to a lesser slope than the
original grade of the overburden existing prior to
(b) All runoff water shall be impounded, drained or treated so as to
reduce soil erosion, damage to unmined lands, and pollution of streams
and other waters. The operator shall construct earth dams, where lakes
may be formed, in accordance with sound engineering practices if
necessary to impound water, provided the formation of the lakes or ponds
will not interfere with underground or other mining operations, other
subsequent uses of the area approved by the Department, or damage
adjoining property. Such water impoundments must be approved by the
Department based on the expected ability of the lakes or ponds to
support desirable uses such as water for livestock or wild life; and if
to be used for fish life, shall have minimum depths in accordance with
standards for fish stocking in the various areas of the State
recommended by the Department.
(c) Acid forming materials present in the exposed face of the mined
mineral seam or seams in the final cut shall be covered at all
with not less than 4 feet of water, or other materials which shall be
placed with slopes having no more than 30% grade, capable of supporting
plant and animal life. Final cuts or other depressed affected areas, no
longer in use in mining operations, which accumulate toxic waters will
not meet reclamation requirements.
(d) Slurry must be confined in depressed or mined areas bounded by
levees or dams constructed from material capable of supporting
acceptable vegetation and built in accordance with sound engineering
practices. Such areas shall be screened with border plantings of tree
species which by their seeding habits will encourage propagation of
vegetation on these areas, and levees or dams built to confine slurry
shall be established to adapted species of grasses. Gob not capable of
supporting vegetation shall be covered to a minimum
depth of 4 feet with
soil or other material in accordance with sound soil conservation
practices as prescribed by the Director. Such material must be capable
of being vegetated and an acceptable cover shall be established. The
above stipulated reclamation measures shall apply to all new refuse
disposal areas or horizontal extensions of existing refuse disposal
areas after the effective date of this Act.
(e) All abandoned haulage roads and all mine drainage ditches must
be removed and graded, except where the Director determines that a road
or ditch is consistent with and necessary to the conservation and
(f) Unless the approved reclamation plan is inconsistent with
vegetative cover, the soil shall be prepared and planted with trees,
shrubs, grasses and legumes to provide suitable vegetative cover, in
accordance with standards adopted by the Department.
(g) All requirements of the Environmental Protection Act, and of
rules and regulations thereunder, as enforced by the Environmental Protection
Agency, shall be complied with fully at all
times during mining, reclamation, and after reclamation.
(h) Surface mining operations that remove and do not replace the
lateral support shall not, unless mutually agreed upon by the operator
and the adjacent property owner, approach property lines, established
right-of-way lines of any public roads, streets or highways closer than
a distance equal to 10 feet plus one and one-half times the depth of the
excavation except where consolidated material or materials of sufficient
hardness or ability to resist weathering and to inhibit erosion or
sloughing exists in the highwall, the distance from the property line or
any established right-of-way line shall not, unless mutually agreed, be
closer than a distance equal to 10 feet plus one and one-half times the
depth from the natural ground surface to the top of the consolidated
material or materials.
(i) The operator shall annually submit to the Department and to the
county a map in a form approved by the Department showing the
location of the pit or pits by section, township, range and county, with
such other description as will identify the land which the operator has
affected by surface mining during such fiscal year and has completed
mining operations thereon, with a legend upon such map showing the
number of acres of affected land.
(j) When the Director determines that the land to be affected is (1)
capable of being reclaimed for row-crop agricultural purposes and
suitable for row-crop agricultural purposes based on United States Soil
Conservation Service soil survey classifications of the affected land
prior to mining, and (2) when the Director determines that the optimum
future use of the land affected is for row-crop agricultural purposes,
the affected land shall be graded to the approximate original grade of
the land provided that the final cut and submerged roadways may remain
if the Department determines that such final cut or roadways could form
a water impoundment capable of supporting desirable uses such as water
for livestock or wild life; and if to be used for fish life, shall have
minimum depths in accordance with standards for fish stocking as
recommended by the Department, and provided further that the box cut
spoil shall be graded in accordance with subparagraph (a) of Section
On all affected lands to be graded to the approximate original grade
under this subsection (j), all or part of the darkened surface soil, as
defined in this Act, shall be segregated during the stripping process
and replaced as a final cover as a last step in the required grading.
When available in such depth, at least 18 inches of the darkened surface
soil shall be segregated and replaced. When less than 18 inches of
darkened surface soil exists all such lesser amounts shall be segregated
and replaced. In no case under this subsection (j) shall less than the
top 8 inches of surface soil, darkened or not, be segregated and
replaced. This segregation and replacement requirement may be altered
by the Department only if it is determined upon the advice of competent
soil scientists that other material available in the cast overburden
would be suitable in meeting the reclamation requirements. Below the
darkened surface soil the replaced material shall be suitable as an
agricultural root medium. The Department shall determine by rules and
regulations what constitutes a suitable agricultural root medium by
composition and depth. On all lands to be reclaimed under this
subsection (j), the operator shall not be required to create a soil
condition better than that which existed prior to surface mining.
(k) All reclamation provided for
hereunder shall be carried to
completion by the operator prior to the expiration of 3 years after active
use, as determined by the Department, except that no other
reclamation of any kind shall be required to be made within depressed
haulage roads or final cuts or any other area where pools or lakes,
capable of supporting aquatic life, may be formed by rainfall or
drainage runoff from adjoining land or where the Director determines
that a road, dry pit bottom or ditch is consistent with and necessary to
the conservation and reclamation plan. All mined areas which in the
reclamation plan call for vegetation shall be covered with whatever
top soils or other materials from the cast overburden that will
acceptable plant growth in accordance with standards adopted by the
Department. The Department shall have authority to require that
darkened surface soil be segregated from other overburden in the
stripping process so as to accomplish the requirements of this
subparagraph. When extension of the reclamation period is necessary to
allow continued mining operation and to accomplish acceptable
reclamation, such extension shall be made at the discretion of the
Department, however, the Department shall not deny a reasonable
extension under any of the subsections of this Section 6 when the
operator shows that acts of God, strikes, inability to receive ordered
equipment or extended periods of unseasonable and not to be expected
weather have made completion within time limits impossible; or, the
Department shall declare forfeiture of the surety bond or security on
such land not satisfactorily reclaimed or the Director shall provide
that the operator cover such areas with material capable of being
vegetated in accordance with vegetative standards adopted by the
Department within 1 year.
If further extension of the reclamation period is necessary to
accomplish acceptable reclamation such extension shall be made at the
discretion of the Department or the Department shall declare forfeiture
of the surety bond or security on such land not satisfactorily
(l) The reclamation requirements in this Section do not apply to affected
land used for a landfill if the landfill is approved by the Environmental
Protection Agency. The Environmental Protection Agency may regulate the amount
of land to be used for that purpose and may establish a time schedule for the
orderly and timely completion of the landfill. Any affected land designated for
landfill and not used for that purpose within 5 years after such a designation
is subject to the reclamation provisions of this Section.
(m) The conservation and reclamation plan shall be completely
performed on time.
(n) High walls shall be reshaped to a slope of two-to-one or 50% to
the anticipated water level or dry pit bottom unless otherwise excepted
by the Director.
(o) The provisions of subsections (j) and (n) of this Section do not
apply to the aggregate mining industry.
(Source: P.A. 91-938, eff. 1-11-01.)
225 ILCS 715/6.5
(225 ILCS 715/6.5)
Blasting operations; regulation.
(a) Blasting operations at permitted and unpermitted sites operated by the
industry shall be conducted only in accordance with existing State and
federal law and rules promulgated by the Department with the advice of the
aggregate mining industry. These rules shall include provisions to require all
of the following:
(1) The maintenance of blasting records for a period
of at least 3 years and that the records be made available for Department inspection and copying. However, these on-site blasting records, as they relate to detonation, are deemed to be proprietary information.
(2) The control of blasting operations so as to
prevent injury to persons and damage to public and private property outside the blasting site.
(3) That all blasting operations be conducted or
supervised by trained and competent persons as licensed by the Department.
(4) That blasting operations be subject to air blast
or ground vibration monitoring, or both, as necessary to limit property damage and protect public safety.
(5) The issuance of notices of violation in the event
of a violation of the Department's blasting rules.
(6) The issuance of orders requiring the cessation of
blasting operations in the event of a violation of the Department's blasting rules that may cause injury to persons or damage to public and private property outside the blasting site.
(7) The assessment of civil penalties, and the
initiation of formal administrative hearings to resolve violations of the Department's blasting rules.
(b) The Department shall promulgate rules requiring the training,
examination, and licensing of persons engaging in or responsible for the
blasting operation or use of explosives in aggregate mining operations. The
rules shall include an administrative enforcement process designed to correct
infractions of the terms of the blasting licenses issued by the Department.
These rules may also include a fee schedule designed to defray the costs
associated with the Department's examination and licensing of persons engaging
in or responsible for the blasting operation or use of explosives in aggregate
(c) The rules implementing the requirements of this Section shall become
effective one year after the rules are adopted by the Department.
(d) The regulation of blasting operations at aggregate
mining operations is an exclusive power and function of the State. A home rule
unit may not regulate blasting operations at aggregate mining operations. This
Section is a denial and limitation of home rule powers and functions under
subsection (h) of Section 6 of Article VII of the Illinois Constitution.
(Source: P.A. 89-26, eff. 6-23-95.)
225 ILCS 715/7
(225 ILCS 715/7)
(from Ch. 96 1/2, par. 4508)
lands for inspection.
The Department, or its accredited representatives, may enter upon the
lands of the operator at all reasonable times for the purpose of
inspection, to determine whether the provisions of this Act have been
(Source: P.A. 77-1568.)
225 ILCS 715/8
(225 ILCS 715/8)
(from Ch. 96 1/2, par. 4509)
Bond of operator; amount; sufficiency of surety; violations;
Any bond herein provided to be filed with the Department by the
operator shall be in such form as the Director prescribes, payable to the
People of the State of Illinois, conditioned that the operator shall
faithfully perform all requirements of this Act and comply with all rules
of the Department made in accordance with the provisions of this Act. Such
bond shall be signed by the operator as principal, and by a good and
sufficient corporate surety, licensed to do business in Illinois, as
surety. The penalty of such bond shall be an amount between $600 and $10,000
per acre as determined by the Director for lands to be affected by
surface mining, including slurry and gob disposal areas. Under circumstances where a written agreement between the operator and a third party require overburden to be removed, replaced, graded, and seeded in a manner that the necessary bond penalty exceeds $10,000 per acre, the Department shall require a bond amount sufficient to ensure the completion of the reclamation plan specified in the approved permit in the event of forfeiture. In no case shall the bond for the entire area under one permit be less than $600 per acre or $3,000, whichever is greater. Areas used for
the disposal of slurry and gob shall continue under bond so long as they
are in active use. In lieu of such bonds, the operator may deposit any
combination of cash, certificates of deposits, government securities, or
irrevocable letters of credit
with the Department in an amount equal to that of the required surety
bond on conditions as prescribed in this Section. The penalty of the bond or amount of other security
shall be increased or reduced from time to time as provided in this Act.
Such bond or security shall remain in effect until the affected lands have
been reclaimed, approved and released by the Department except that when
the Department determines that grading and covering with materials capable
of supporting vegetation in accordance with the plan has been
satisfactorily completed, the Department shall release the bond or security
except the amount of $100 per acre which shall be retained by the
Department until the reclamation according to Section 6 of this Act has
been completed. Where an anticipated water impoundment has been approved by
the Department in the reclamation plan, and the Department determines the
impoundment will be satisfactorily completed upon completion of the
operation, the bond covering such anticipated water impoundment area shall
A bond filed as above prescribed shall not be cancelled by the surety
except after not less than 90 days' notice to the Department.
If the license to do business in Illinois of any surety upon a bond
filed with the Department pursuant to this Act shall be suspended or
revoked, the operator, within 30 days after receiving notice thereof from
the Department, shall substitute for such surety a good and sufficient
corporate surety licensed to do business in Illinois. Upon failure of the
operator to make substitution of surety as herein provided, the Department
shall have the right to suspend the permit of the operator until such
substitution has been made.
The Department shall give written notice to the operator of any
violation of this Act or non-compliance with any of the rules and
regulations promulgated by the Department hereunder and if corrective
measures, approved by the Department, are not commenced within 45 days, the
Department may proceed as provided in Section 11 of this Act to request
forfeiture of the bond or security. The forfeiture shall be the amount of
bond or security in effect at the time of default for each acre or portion
thereof with respect to which the operator has defaulted. Such forfeiture
shall fully satisfy all obligations of the operator to reclaim the affected
land under the provisions of this Act.
The Department shall have the power to reclaim, in keeping with the
provisions of this Act, any affected land with respect to which a bond has
Whenever an operator shall have completed all requirements under the
provisions of this Act as to any affected land, he shall notify the
Department thereof. If the Department determines that the operator has
completed reclamation requirements and refuse disposal requirements and has
achieved results appropriate to the use for which the area was reclaimed,
the Department shall release the operator from further obligations
regarding such affected land and the penalty of the bond shall be reduced
Bonding aggregate mining operations under permit by the State is an
exclusive power and function of the State. A home rule unit may not require
bonding of aggregate mining operations under permit by the State. This
provision is a denial and limitation of home rule powers and functions under
subsection (h) of Section 6 of Article VII of the Illinois Constitution of
(Source: P.A. 99-224, eff. 1-1-16
225 ILCS 715/9
(225 ILCS 715/9)
(from Ch. 96 1/2, par. 4510)
Fees and forfeitures; deposit.
All fees and penalties collected under the provisions of this Act
shall be deposited into the Aggregate Operations Regulatory Fund.
All forfeitures collected under the provisions of this Act shall be deposited
in the reclamation fund to be used for the purposes for which the penal
bond was issued, that is, to assure that the mining company reclaims the
land of the mining operation according to the permit it received.
(Source: P.A. 89-26, eff. 6-23-95.)
225 ILCS 715/10
(225 ILCS 715/10)
(from Ch. 96 1/2, par. 4511)
(a) In addition to the duties and powers of the Department prescribed by
Civil Administrative Code of Illinois, it shall have full power and
authority to carry out and administer the provisions of this Act.
These powers shall include, but are not limited to, the imposition of the
following fees to enable the Department to carry out the requirements of this
(1) A registration fee of $475 assessed on July 1 of
each calendar year that is due from each operator engaged in and controlling a permitted or unpermitted surface mining operation. The registration fee shall be accompanied by a registration form, provided by the Department, which shall indicate the mailing address and telephone number of the operator, the location of all mining operations controlled by the operator, the minerals being mined, and other information deemed necessary by the Department. A $475 registration fee is the maximum registration fee due from a single operator each calendar year regardless of the number of sites under the operator's control.
(2) An additional fee of $175 assessed on July 1 of
each calendar year for each site that was actively being surfaced mined during the preceding 12 months that is due from the operator engaged in and controlling the permitted or unpermitted surface mining operations.
(3) An additional fee of $375 assessed on July 1 of
each calendar year that is due from each operator engaged in and controlling a permitted or unpermitted surface mining operation where blasting operations occurred during the preceding 12 months.
(b) Fees shall be assessed by the Department commencing July 1, 1995 for
every surface mine operator, active mining site, and active aggregate blasting
operation of record as of that date and on July 1 of each year thereafter.
The fees assessed under this Section are in addition to any other fees required
(c) All fees assessed under this Section shall be submitted to the
Department no later than 30 days from the date listed on the Department's
annual fee assessment letter sent to the surface mine operator. If the
operator is delinquent in the payment of the fees assessed under this Section,
no further permits or certifications shall be issued to the operator until
the delinquent fees
have been paid. Moreover, if the operator is delinquent for more than 60 days
in the payment of fees assessed under this Section, the Department shall take
the action, in accordance with Section 13 of this Act, necessary to enjoin
further surface mining and aggregate blasting
operations until all delinquent fees are paid.
(Source: P.A. 97-1136, eff. 1-1-13.)
225 ILCS 715/11
(225 ILCS 715/11)
(from Ch. 96 1/2, par. 4512)
The Attorney General, upon request of the Department, shall institute
proceedings to have the bond of the operator forfeited for violation by the
operator of any of the provisions of this Act or for non-compliance with
any lawful rule or regulation promulgated by the Department thereunder.
Before making such request of the Attorney General, the Department shall
notify the operator in writing of the alleged violation or non-compliance
and shall afford the operator the right to appear before the Department at
a hearing to be held not less than 30 days after the receipt of such notice
by the operator. At the hearing the operator may present for the
consideration of the Department statements, documents and other information
with respect to the alleged violation. After the conclusion of the hearing,
the Department shall either withdraw the notice of violation or shall
request the Attorney General to institute proceedings to have the bond of
the operator forfeited as to the land involved.
Any operator against whom forfeiture proceedings have been required
should not be issued a permit for further surface mining in Illinois except
if he provides additional assurances satisfactory to the Director that such
proceedings shall not again become necessary.
(Source: P.A. 77-1568.)
225 ILCS 715/12
(225 ILCS 715/12)
(from Ch. 96 1/2, par. 4513)
(a) The Department may adopt and promulgate reasonable rules
respecting the administration of this Act, and in conformity therewith.
(b) Rules adopted by the Department shall not apply retroactively. Any
operator shall have the right to proceed with operations under this Act until
such rules are adopted and no such rules shall be made applicable to any
operations prior to the effective date thereof.
(c) In addition to the provisions of this Section, and to the extent
consistent with this Section, the provisions of the Illinois Administrative
Procedure Act apply to the adoption of rules under this Act.
(d) Any act authorized to be done by the Director may be performed by
Assistant Director or any employee of the Department when designated by the
(Source: P.A. 91-938, eff. 1-11-01.)
225 ILCS 715/13
(225 ILCS 715/13)
(from Ch. 96 1/2, par. 4515)
Any person required by this Act to have a permit who engages in surface
mining without previously securing a permit to do so as prescribed by this
Act, is guilty of a business offense and shall be fined not less than $50
nor more than $1,000. Each day of operation without the permit required by
this Act shall be deemed a separate violation.
Authorized representatives of the Department shall by injunctive
procedures close down at once any operator found to be surface mining
without a permit or in violation of this Act. No liability whatsoever
shall accrue to the Department or its authorized representative in closing
down any operator pursuant to this Section.
(Source: P.A. 78-1295.)
225 ILCS 715/13a
(225 ILCS 715/13a)
(from Ch. 96 1/2, par. 4516)
All final administrative decisions of the Department hereunder shall be
subject to judicial review pursuant to the provisions of the Administrative
Review Law, and all amendments and
modifications thereof, and the rules adopted pursuant thereto. The term
"administrative decision" is defined as in Section 3-101 of the Code of
(Source: P.A. 82-783.)
225 ILCS 715/14
(225 ILCS 715/14)
(from Ch. 96 1/2, par. 4517)
All permits, bonds, plans, duties and requirements pursuant to "The Open
Cut Land Reclamation Act", approved August 10, 1961, as amended, and "The
Surface-Mined Land Reclamation Act", approved April 6, 1967, as amended,
shall remain in full force and effect with respect to mining commenced
prior to the effective date of this Act.
(Source: P.A. 77-1568.)
225 ILCS 715/15
(225 ILCS 715/15)
(from Ch. 96 1/2, par. 4518)
(Source: P.A. 77-1568. Repealed by P.A. 91-938, eff. 1-11-01.)
225 ILCS 715/16
(225 ILCS 715/16)
(from Ch. 96 1/2, par. 4519)
If any Section, subdivision, clause, sentence or paragraph in this Act
shall be held to be unconstitutional, the unconstitutionality thereof shall
not affect the remaining parts of this Act.
(Source: P.A. 77-1568.)
225 ILCS 715/17
(225 ILCS 715/17)
(from Ch. 96 1/2, par. 4520)
The Director and the Land Reclamation Division within the
Department of Natural Resources shall have the power
and duty to act as
the regulatory authority for the State of Illinois, under the Surface Mining
Control and Reclamation Act of 1977, P.L. 95-87, (hereinafter sometimes
referred to as the "Federal Law") Section 502, and, to the extent required
by P.L. 95-87, Section 510 (d), with respect to the initial regulatory program,
and for purposes of formal State program development under Section 503.
b. The regulatory authority is authorized to: (i) hold hearings, (ii)
undertake inspections, (iii) file inspection reports, (iv) require compliance
with and enforce initial performance standards contained in Section
502(c) of the Federal Law including, as deemed appropriate, the conditioning
of new and existing permits with lawfully imposed requirements no more
stringent than Federal Law and regulations; (v) make determinations under
Section 510(d) and otherwise to comply with and administer the initial
regulatory program, (vi) adopt such rules and regulations as are necessary or
appropriate to the purposes of this Section; and (vii) apply for, accept,
receive, receipt for and use for and in behalf of the State such moneys or
property as are given or granted by the Federal Government under the Federal
Law or any other federal law, or from any other lawful public or private
source, for the purposes of developing, administering or enforcing the Federal
Law or this Act, and otherwise for mined land reclamation purposes, provided
that such funds received shall be deposited with the State Treasurer and held
and disbursed by him in accordance with "An Act in relation to the receipt,
custody, and disbursement of money allotted by the United States of America or
any agency thereof for use in this State", approved July 3, 1939, as amended,
and provided that such moneys or property shall be used only for the purposes
for which they are contributed. Adoption of rules and regulations authorized
by this Section shall be pursuant to Section 5-35 of the
Illinois Administrative Procedure Act.
c. No person shall open, develop or operate a surface coal mining operation
(including an underground operation) as defined in P.L. 95-87, Section 701(28),
without a permit from the regulatory authority. The Director may provide
for a reasonable implementation schedule for this permit requirement,
consistent with the administration of the Federal Law.
d. Standards used and conditions imposed in the administration and
enforcement of this Section shall be no more stringent than required
by the Federal Law and federal regulations thereunder. Nothing in this
Section shall be construed to require a determination or finding pursuant
to subsection 510(d) of the Federal Law, as to any permit issued prior to
August 3, 1977, or to any revisions or renewals thereof, or to any existing
surface mining operations for which a permit was issued (or, in the case
of underground mines, for which a notice of mine opening was filed pursuant
to Section 3.06 of the Coal Mining Act), prior to August 3, 1977.
e. If an application for a permit discloses, or if the regulatory authority
or the Illinois Department of Agriculture have reason to believe that a
surface coal mining operation subject to determination under Section 510(d)
of the Federal Law contains prime farm land, as defined by subsection 701(20)
of the Federal Law, then, in addition to other requirements of the Federal
Law, the determination of the regulatory authority under Section 510(d)
of the Federal Law respecting whether a permit shall be granted shall be
made only after written consideration of any comments which may be made
by the Interagency Committee on Surface Mining Control and Reclamation.
f. (1) The Interagency Committee on Surface Mining Conservation and
Reclamation ("the Interagency Committee") shall consist of the Director (or
Division head) of each of the following State agencies: (1) the Department
of Agriculture, (2) the Environmental Protection Agency, (3) the
Division of Water Resources in the Department of Natural Resources, (4) the
Department of Natural Resources, and (5) any other State agency designated by
regulatory authority as having a programmatic role in the review or regulation
of surface coal mining operations whose comments are expected by the regulatory
authority to be relevant and of material benefit to the review process.
(2) The Interagency Committee shall review and comment on permit
applications concerning protection of the hydrologic system, water pollution
control, reclamation plans and soil handling techniques, dams and impoundments,
and postmining land use regarding mining operations subject to prime farm land
determinations under Section 510(d)(1) pursuant to the Federal Law.
(3) Upon receipt of a complete application for a permit, the regulatory
authority shall provide each agency which is a member of the Interagency
Committee with a copy thereof. Each Committee member shall prepare its
proposed response and comments to the application within 45 days, and shall
forward same to the regulatory authority. Comments shall be based upon
factual, legal, and technical considerations, and such considerations shall
be stated in the comment. The comments of the Interagency Committee shall
be filed in the office of the County Clerk of each County in which surface
mining subject to the application is proposed to take place. Whenever a
County Board may request a hearing on a reclamation plan pursuant to Section
5(f) of the Act, and the application is also made subject to Interagency
Committee review and comment by this Section 17, then, notwithstanding time
limits on County Board action pursuant to Section 5(f) and 5(g) of this
Act, the County Board shall have 30 days from the date of filing of the
Interagency Comments with the County Clerk in which either to request a
public hearing under Section 5(f) and Section 17, or, alternatively to file
written comments, recommendations and affidavits concerning the reclamation
plan and the other subjects of Interagency Committee review under this Section
17. In addition to other relevant information, the regulatory authority
shall consider all comments, recommendations, testimony and evidence presented
at the public hearing or by written submittal of a County Board, prior to and
in connection with its final action. The regulatory authority may consult with
the applicant, the relevant County Board, appropriate Interagency Committee
members, and may seek qualified advice of other technically trained experts,
concerning standards and conditions of the permit necessary or appropriate to
comply with this Act and regulations. The applicant may furnish supplemental
information in support or modification of its application, provided that
interested parties are given a reasonable opportunity to comment thereon.
Final action on the application shall occur within 120 days of initial receipt
of a complete application, unless time for such action is waived by the
applicant, or unless, as to operations subject to the requirements of Section 4
of the Act, the time for final action is otherwise tolled pursuant to the Act
or regulations thereunder. If no final action occurs within the time in which
final action is required, the applicant, upon written notice to the regulatory
authority, may deem the application denied, and such denial shall constitute
final action. The regulatory authority shall set forth the factual, technical
and legal basis for its final action as part of the record. Review of any such
final action shall be in accordance with the Administrative Review Law, as
g. Violation of the Act (including this Section), or of the terms of any
permit, or of any regulation adopted under this Section or otherwise under
the Act shall, in addition to other penalties provided by the Act, be
punishable, after notice of the violation alleged and opportunity for a
hearing, by modification, suspension or revocation of a permit by the Director.
In case the Director receives information of an emergency posing a serious
immediate threat of significant harm to life, public health or safety, property
or the environment, permit suspension may be immediate, subject to a prompt
hearing and decision. The regulatory authority is authorized to undertake,
cooperate with, and participate in enforcement activity under the Federal Law,
as deemed appropriate to the purposes of this Act and the Federal Law.
h. The regulatory authority may delegate responsibilities, other than
final action on permits, to other State agencies, with the consent of such
agencies, and the regulatory authority may contract with any State officer
or agency, to administer such responsibilities hereunder as may be deemed
necessary and appropriate to provide for effective administration of this
Section taking into account the need to have efficient administration
hereof, without unreasonable or unnecessary cost or duplication of effort,
and taking into account the need to deliver fair and effective governmental
service to the interested public.
i. The Director shall implement and enforce regulations to assure that
no person employed by the regulatory authority performing any function or
duty under this Section shall have a direct or indirect financial interest
in underground or surface coal mining operations, in violation of the Federal
j. Surface coal mining operations subject to the permit requirement of
Section 4 of this Act shall comply with all requirements of this Act, including
this Section. Nothing in this Section shall be construed to limit the
authority of a County board under Section 5(f) of the Act. Surface
coal mining operations subject to this Section, for which no permit is
required under Section 4 of this Act, shall be subject to Sections 2, 3,
5a, 8, 9, 10, 11, 13, 13(a), 15 and 16 of this Act, as well as this Section.
The regulatory authority shall administer the permit requirements of Section
4 and this Act jointly, so as to require only one permit of an operator
of a surface mining operation. In case of a conflict between permit
requirements or regulations under other Sections of this Act and this Section,
this Section and standards, conditions, rules and regulations adopted or
imposed pursuant to this Section, shall control; no standard or condition
imposed pursuant to this Section shall be less stringent than imposed by other
Sections of this Act, or regulations thereunder.
k. The Interagency Committee shall hold meetings for the purpose of
reviewing other regulatory and permit requirements imposed by state and federal
law upon owners and operators of surface coal mining operations, with a view
to, and, to the extent lawful and appropriate, for the purpose of the joint
consideration and determination of NPDES and other permit applications required
of owners and operators of surface coal mining operations, to make as effective
as possible a unified permit system requiring a single application and final
determination of the State agencies involved.
l. The enactment hereof shall not be construed to limit the
effect of any other remedy or other requirement of State or Federal laws,
except as expressly provided herein.
(Source: P.A. 88-45; 89-445, eff. 2-7-96.)